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The Sinner [Abridged, Audiobook] [Audio CD]

Tess Gerritsen , Dennis Boutsikaris
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (112 customer reviews)
RRP: £10.84
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Book Description

26 April 2011
From the New York Times bestselling author of The Surgeon and The Apprentice comes a chilling new novel of suspense featuring Boston medical examiner Dr. Maura Isles, on the deadly trail of an anonymous madman who’s committed an unholy crime. . . .


Not even the icy temperatures of a typical New England winter can match the bone-chilling scene of carnage discovered in the early morning hours at the chapel of Our Lady of Divine Light. Within the sanctuary walls of the cloistered convent, now stained with blood, lie two nuns—one dead, one critically injured—victims of an unspeakably savage attacker.

The brutal crime appears to be without motive, and the elderly nuns in residence can offer little help in the police investigation. But medical examiner Maura Isles’s autopsy of the dead woman yields a shocking surprise: Twenty-year-old Sister Camille, the order’s sole novice, gave birth before she was murdered. Then the disturbing case takes a stunning new turn when another woman is found murdered in an abandoned building, her body mutilated beyond recognition.

Together, Isles and homicide detective Jane Rizzoli uncover an ancient horror that connects these terrible slaughters. As long-buried secrets come to light, Maura Isles finds herself drawn inexorably toward the heart of an investigation that strikes closer and closer to home—and toward a dawning revelation about the killer’s identity too shattering to consider.

As spine-tingling as it is mind-jolting, The Sinner showcases Tess Gerritsen in peak form—bringing her intimate knowledge of the dark depths of criminal investigation brilliantly to bear. Beneath its layers of startling insight into the souls of its characters, and the richly wrought depiction of the everyday war between good and evil, beats the unstoppable heart of an irresistible thriller.

Tess Gerritsen left a successful practice as an internist to raise her children and concentrate on her writing. She gained nationwide acclaim for her first novel of medical suspense, the New York Times bestseller Harvest. She is also the author of the bestsellers Life Support, Bloodstream, Gravity, and The Surgeon and The Apprentice. Tess Gerritsen lives in Maine.


The Surgeon

“A briskly paced, terrifically suspenseful work that steadily builds toward a tense and terrifying climax.”
People (Page-Turner of the week)

“Creepy . . . [The Surgeon] will exert a powerful grip on readers.”
Chicago Tribune

“Grabbed me by the throat and didn’t let go.”

The Apprentice

“Skillful and scary.”
—The Washington Post Book World

“An adrenaline rush from start to finish.”

“Masterful . . . Gerritsen moves into the Thomas Harris class, though with a style all her own.”
Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

From the Hardcover edition.

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Frequently Bought Together

The Sinner + Ice Cold (Rizzoli & Isles Novels) + The Silent Girl: A Rizzoli & Isles Novel (Jane Rizzoli and Maura Isles)
Price For All Three: £28.68

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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Random House Audio Publishing Group; Abridged edition (26 April 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307933113
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307933119
  • Product Dimensions: 15.1 x 12.8 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (112 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 546,166 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Bestselling author Tess Gerritsen is also a physician, and she brings to her novels her first-hand knowledge of emergency and autopsy rooms. But her interests span far more than medical topics. As an anthropology student at Stanford University, she catalogued centuries-old human remains, and she continues to travel the world driven by her fascination with ancient cultures and bizarre natural phenomena. She started off her writing career with romance novels, now published by Mira. But in 1996 she switched to writing thrillers with her novel HARVEST, inspired by the anger she felt about the illegal trade in human organs. It was her first New York Times bestseller. Since then she has become an internationally bestselling author of crime novels, and her thriller series starring Boston detective Jane Rizzoli and medical examiner Maura Isles is the basis for the hit television series "Rizzoli & isles." She lives with her husband in Maine. For more information on Tess Gerritsen and her novels, visit her website:

Product Description


"Absolutely riveting - you won't be able to put this down" -- Mo Hayder "Woven within the horror of this gruesome story is the old allegory of good versus evil, but by relating it through these two fascinating individuals, Gerritsen avoids cliches. Another captivating, horrific thriller in her extremely popular cannon" Booklist "All her pages suffused from lividity, Doc Gerritsen's morgue slab awaits you, reader... Glorious deaths bursting with the guilty glow of sex" Kirkus Reviews --This text refers to the Unknown Binding edition.

Book Description

If it's gripping, it's Gerritsen. A terrifying Rizzoli and Isles bestseller. --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Somewhat disappointing 9 July 2007
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is my third Tess Gerritsen novel after reading The Surgeon and The Apprentice. While The Surgeon had me hooked from the get-go I was a little disappointed with the last two books.

This story starts with the discovery of a dead nun in a convent in Boston. Found beside her is another nun.....badly injured but still alive. Meanwhile, further across town the corpse of another victim is found in an abandoned building. Dr Maura Isles is the Medical Examiner on both cases and while she tries to figure out the why's surrounding each case she also finds herself having to handle the reemergence of somebody from her past.

Detectives Jane Rizzoli and Barry Frost are the investigating officers on both cases, bringing back the characters from The Surgeon and The Apprentice.

What I liked about The Surgeon was the page-turning drama involved in the search for a serial killer and the fact that the story wasn't focused on just one character. Ms Gerritsen has changed tact for The Sinner and I don't think it worked. The Sinner was disappointing because it didn't have that drama and instead the story seemed to focus more on the love-lives of Dr. Isles and Det. Rizzoli with the cases going on around them acting as mere background.

As for the was obvious who the baddie was in the last few chapters but there was no build-up and we still know virtually nothing about our baddie and that in itself was disappointing.

I know this review seems negative and that's not my intention. The Sinner is still a very good book but it lacked the punch I expected after reading The Surgeon. I've now started reading Body Double so we'll see how that turns out before I abandon all hope!
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars PECCAVI.....I didn't give it 5 stars 12 Sep 2006
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Anyone who has read THE SURGEON or THE APPRENTICE will know why my expectations were sky-high for this, the third in the Jane Rizzoli series. Those two novels were excellent, full of tension, suspense and pace. But here, Tess has gone way off the boil and has somehow turned what should have been a crime thriller into something of a romantic piece of ho-hum that borders on chick-lit. Borders, I stress, without quite entering. Tess claims that The Sinner was a fresh new challenge for her - and I quote from the great lady herself :-

"I actually found THE SINNER one of my most challenging and satisfying books to write, because it was not a simple serial killer book, and I couldn't rely on that automatic internal drumbeat of tension that a stalking/serial killer novel has. Serial killers are actually easy villains to create and I always feel like I'm taking the easy way out when I do one of those. But taking an overseas corporate horror and turning it into a homicide case in Boston was a lot harder"

Well, if it was a lot harder, it shows. The corporate horror she refers to is, I suppose, at the core of the plot here but it really hardly ever shows its face. I am actually intrigued by corporate crime, fraud or corruption so if anything I would have welcomed it with open arms had I known this in advance. But while there are some gruesome murders early on, followed by the always excellent forensic and medical analysis, in truth the meat and bones of this story is represented by the continuing dilemmas in the private life of Detective Rizzoli, alongside those of her associate in the morgue Dr Maura Isles.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good Plot and Characters but Something Missing 1 Nov 2003
By Veronica VINE VOICE
The Sinner is a decent medical thriller which I enjoyed, although not as much as the past two books by the author, The Surgeon and The Apprentice. The strength for me was the plot which had me guessing and the style of writing which was lyrical and descriptive.
The characters Jane Rizzoli (a detective) and Dr.Maura Isles (a forensic examiner) were interesting but it seemed strange that they both were successful professionally and yet hopeless with men and relationships in general. The book was written in a
way that made it seem as though only cold, extremely tough and blunt women can succeed in a professional arena. In the Surgeon I liked reading about a controversial, edgy female (Jane Rizzoli) and that still stands. However, I found some of Rizzoli's needless rudeness and nastiness towards anyone who shows her concern to be wearying this time around because it was so unnecessary in many cases and she came across as petty rather than angry about sexism in the police force.
I also found the dealing of the Catholic Church to be very heavy handed and biased. All the nuns were described many times as old and detached - not a single one of them was given any personality, depth or kindness. The only young nun was written about in an equally negative way. Secondly, both Maura and Jane were lapsed Catholics and were highly cynical about religion of any kind. Of course, this is fine, but there was simply no balance to the book as no religious characters were allowed to speak. In the end I found the constant sniping about faith and belief to be jarring.
Overall the Sinner is a competent thriller and the medical details were excellent. There were surprises and shocks along the way and the characters were believable if not always likeable.
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